Lentil and Beef Stew

Lentil Beef Stew.jpg

This recipe transforms a regular 2-serving can of Campbell’s Chunky Beef soup into a big, satisfying meal for a whole family! It also adds extra protein, vitamin A, fibre, and other essential nutrients. You can serve this stew with a slice of bread or a bun, or over rice or pasta.

Serves: 3-4

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 1 can Campbell’s Chunky Beef Soup
  • 1/2 can lentils OR chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups water

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1 carrot, peeled and sliced
  • 2 white turnips, peeled and sliced, OR 1/4 rutabaga, peeled and sliced
  • Optional: 1 celery stick, chopped

Seasoning

  • Fresh parsley, chopped OR 2 tbsp dried parsley

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Large saucepan

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a saucepan, boil the water. Add the carrots and turnips, cooking for 4 minutes (or until soft; be careful not to overcook, otherwise veggies will be mushy!)
  2. Turn heat down to medium. Add the can of soup and the lentils/chickpeas. Add the parsley and celery (if using).
  3. Stir the mixture thoroughly. Heat through until it begins bubbling, then serve.

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup.jpg

(Source: Kraft Canada)

Butternut squash is a great source of fibre and vitamins A and C! It is a comforting winter squash that is good for you and will keep you full. When it’s in season (i.e. late fall/winter), it’s also quite inexpensive!

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 2 cans chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup instant white rice, uncooked

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 2 celery (stalks, not whole bunches/roots!), chopped
  • 4 cups chopped butternut squash
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup milk

Seasoning

  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Medium pot
  • Wooden spoon
  • Blender
  • Microwave

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preparing butternut squash: Cut off the ends of the butternut squash, then microwave on high for ~5 minutes (depending on size of the squash), until you can easily pierce the squash with fork. Then peel the squash, cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, and cut into ~1-inch cubes.
  2. In medium pot, bring 1 can of broth, onions, carrots, and celery to a boil. Cook for 5-10 minutes , until vegetables are tender.
  3. Add squash, rice, and nutmeg. Mix well.
  4. Stir in water and remaining can of broth. Simmer on medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes, until the squash is tender.
  5. Blend soup in small batches until smooth.
  6. Return to pot and stir in milk. Serve hot.

It’s Peanut Butter-Jelly Granola Bar Time!

Peanut butter is a convenient (and very kid-friendly) way of adding some nutrition to your daily diet! Eaten in moderation (read: small amounts at a time), it is a good source of healthy fats, protein, fibre, and vitamins–all of which help boost your energy and immune system. Opt for low-sugar and lower-fat peanut butters when you can!

PBJ Bars.jpg

(Source: Leanne Brown’s “Good and Cheap” Cookbook)

These bars are great for a quick but nutritious on-the-go breakfast or snack, and better for you than store-bought granola bars!

Makes ~12 bars

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 3 cups oats (or 2 cups of oats with 1 cup Rice Krispies cereal)
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup hot water

Fresh/Frozen

  • Butter or vegetable oil

Seasonings/Add-ins

  • 1/2 cup jelly/jam of your choice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Optional: chocolate chips, nuts, coconut, dried fruit, honey

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Baking pan
  • Large bowl
  • Small pan

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Heat the oven to 350F.
  2. Use butter or oil to grease the baking pan.
  3. Pour oats into a large bowl.
  4. Add peanut butter and half of the jelly, hot water, and salt into a small pan. Stir over low heat until smooth.
  5. Mix the peanut butter and jelly mixture into the oats until the oats are evenly coated.
  6. Pour mixture into the oiled pan and press into an even layer.
  7. Spread remaining jelly on top.
  8. Put the baking pan into the oven and bake for 25 minutes (or until toasty brown around the edges).
  9. Leave the bars in the pan until cooled completely (approximately 1 hour). Slice into separate bars.

How to Be a Sauce Boss

These awesome sauces can be served on pasta, rice, or even meat dishes or mashed potatoes… the possibilities are really exciting 😉

Butternut Squash Sauce with Sage

Butternut Squash Sauce.jpg

(Source: FoodNetwork)

This gorgeous golden sauce packs a powerful nutritional punch, with lots of vitamins! You can also try this recipe with pumpkin instead of butternut squash–either way, this is a fantastic and very inexpensive fall recipe to try this year.

Serves: ~6

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled and cubed (we will explain how in this recipe!)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • Optional: Cheese

Seasoning

  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 6 sage leaves, cut into thin strips

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Microwave
  • Medium saucepan
  • Wooden spoon
  • Blender

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Prepare butternut squash: wash the outside of the squash. Cut off the top “stem”. Microwave on a microwave-safe dish for ~5 minutes, or until you can pierce easily with a fork. THE SQUASH WILL BE VERY HOT!! You can either wait for the squash to cool, or dunk it in a LARGE BOWL OF ICE WATER to help speed up the cooling. Then you can peel the squash, cut it in half, scoop out the insides, and cut the flesh into ~1/2-inch cubes.
  2. Heat olive oil in medium saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic.
  3. Add squash and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Add bay leaf, nutmeg, sage, and chicken broth.
  5. Cover the pan and cook for 8 minutes, or until squash is tender.
  6. Puree the sauce with a blender until smooth.
  7. Serve over pasta of choice–pictured here is gnocchi!
  8. Add cheese of your choice.

Easy Marinara Sauce

Marinara.jpg

Marinara is a classic tomato-based sauce that you can make in huge batches and store in the fridge in jars or freeze in zippered freezer bags. Making your own can take some time, but it’s a great way to cut down on salt (also known as sodium) in your diet. You could also select “low sodium” or “no sodium added” varieties of pre-made sauce, but nothing really tastes quite as good as homemade! Adding lentils, canned beans, ground meat, or canned tuna can complete this meal with a great source of protein.

Serves: ~4

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • Optional: 1/2 cup lentils or 1 can tuna
  • Pasta of your choice
  • Drizzle of oil of your choice to grease the pan

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 cup onion, diced

Seasoning

  • 2 tbsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Bowl
  • Refrigerator
  • Saucepan

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Heat a small amount of oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute onions and garlic until soft, about 3-5 minutes.
  2. Stir in tomatoes with their juice. Crush and simmer for 15 minutes.
  3. Stir in seasoning and lentils/tuna (if desired), and simmer for another 15 minutes.

Healthy Spaghetti Sauce Boosts

If you do want to use pre-made tomato/pasta sauce, adding lentils will boost protein without much additional cost. Lentils provide more than just protein–they are also a source of iron, folic acid, magnesium, and potassium. As always, you can add as much of any veggies you would like: 1/2 a package of frozen spinach or 1 can of drained mushrooms would also be delicious in this sauce!

Serves: 3-4

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 1 can/jar of regular pasta sauce
  • 1/2 can lentils, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp oil (canola or olive)

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and minced (OR 1/2 tsp garlic powder)
  • 1 small onion, chopped

Seasoning

  • Optional: 1 tbsp Italian Seasoning (or oregano +/- basil +/- parsley)

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Grater (for the carrot)
  • Saucepan

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Heat 2 tbsp oil in saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and onion, stirring, until sizzling.
  2. Add carrot (or other vegetables), lentils, and pasta sauce.
  3. Add the seasonings, if desired.
  4. Heat through until all ingredients are mixed and sauce is hot (bubbling slightly). Pour over prepared pasta and serve. Feel free to add some cheese!

Mushroom Sauce

Mushroom Sauce.jpg

(Source: FoodNetwork)

This creamy, silky sauce is absolutely scrumptious over any pasta, and goes wonderfully with chicken. You can use any type of mushroom you like–button mushrooms are the least expensive, but feel free to use portobello, cremini, or any other type of mushroom. You can always mix and match! If you’re not a fan of leeks (or just don’t have any at home), you can use an onion instead.

If you want a super-fast version of this sauce (even though it won’t be the same), try using a can of condensed cream of mushroom soup with only ~1/4-1/2 a can of milk, and let it simmer over low heat to allow the sauce to thicken. Then you can serve over pasta or anything else of your choice.

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 sage leaves, chopped
  • 6oz mushrooms, washed and sliced
  • 1 cup heavy cream (35%)
  • 1/2 leek, roughly chopped

Seasoning

  • Salt and pepper to taste

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Medium saucepan
  • Wooden spoon

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add the chopped leeks, garlic, and sage, and cook until leeks soften (about 3-5 minutes).
  3. Add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes until softened.
  4. Pour in cream and heat slowly. DO NOT “scald” the cream–keep stirring until bubbles begin to form, then bring the heat down (or remove from the heat) and continue to stir as the sauce thickens.
  5. Serve with pasta of your choice.

Banana Oatmeal Muffins

Banana and oatmeal are a match made in heaven. Enjoy these yummy muffins for breakfast or as a snack–kids love them, and they’ll love helping out in the kitchen, too!

Makes ~12 muffins

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 1 1/2 cups white or whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • Cooking spray or oil to grease the muffin pan

Fresh/Frozen

  • 3 overripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup milk (any milk of your choice–soy, almond, rice, etc.)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • Optional: 1/2 cup grated carrots or zucchini
  • Optional: 1 cup blueberries or walnuts

Seasoning

  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • 12-cup muffin pan
  • 2 mixing bowls
  • Oven

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray.
  2. Stir together flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
  3. In a separate bowl, mash the bananas very well, then stir in applesauce, milk, lemon juice, and vanilla extract.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the banana mixture and stir until just combined. At this point, you can fold in the optional ingredients (berries, nuts, carrots, zucchini).
  5. Pour batter evenly into 12 muffin cups.
  6. Bake for 16-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of each muffin comes out clean.

(Recipe from: http://re-play.com/blogs/show-tell/18901567-sugar-free-banana-oatmeal-muffins-kids-will-love)

Banana-Oat Smoothie

This thick smoothie is a sweet and nutritious treat that you can enjoy for breakfast or at any time of day!

Serves: 1

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 1/4 cup rolled oats

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 banana, cut into thirds
  • 1/2 cup milk

Seasoning

  • 2 tbsp honey (brown sugar could also work!)
  • Optional: 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Blender

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Combine all ingredients in blender. Blend until smooth. Serve immediately.

Oatmeal Pancakes

Want a more interesting breakfast than just plain old oatmeal? Try these pancake recipes!

Plain Oatmeal Pancakes

These pancakes are delicious and high in fibre!

Serves: ~2

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 1/2 cup quick oats

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup milk (could be any variety–soy, almond, rice…)
  • Butter, margarine, or oil to grease frying pan

Seasoning

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Large bowl
  • Frying pan

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Put all ingredients in a bowl and use a spoon to mix thoroughly. Let sit 1-2 minutes.
  2. Heat frying pan over medium heat, with a small amount of oil or butter on the bottom.
  3. Spoon batter into frying pan, making 2-4 evenly sized pancakes.
  4. Cook on each side until lightly brown.

Oatmeal Cottage Cheese Pancakes

You can top these pancakes with anything you like–maple or table syrup, fruit (e.g. bananas, fresh or frozen berries), jam…

Serves: ~2

INGREDIENTS

Non-perishables

  • 1/2 cup (40g) quick oats
  • Oil or cooking spray for frying pan

Fresh/Frozen

  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese
  • 4 egg whites

Seasoning

  • 1 tsp vanilla

KITCHEN EQUIPMENT

  • Blender
  • Skillet or frying pan

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Spray skillet with cooking spray or grease with oil.
  3. Spoon small, even spoonfuls of batter onto pan, careful to leave lots of space between them.
  4. Cook on each side until lightly brown.